The country of Ceylon was renamed as Sri Lanka in 1972, although the tea from the region continues to be referred to by the previous name. Ceylon allows the tea enthusiast an opportunity to enjoy teas across a large spectrum of flavours and styles. This due not only to the various geographical locations on the island but also to the altitude at which the tea is cultivated. Teas can be either:
- Lowgrown - up to 550m
- Midgrown - 550 - 1050m
- Highgrown - 1050 -2250m
A lightening trip around the area will paint a sketch of the differences in style.
Nuwara Eliya produces delicately fragrant teas. As Nuwara Eliya is unique, so is its tea, the fragrance of cypress trees and the menthol of wild mint and eucalyptus float through the air and contributes to the teas characteristic flavour. Recognized by tea connoisseurs, it has been said that Nuwara Eliya, at 6,250 feet (1,900 meters) above sea level for Ceylon tea is what champagne is to French wine.
Dimbula is, perhaps the most famous name associated with Ceylon tea. The plantations, located at 3,500 to 5,500 feet (1,100 meters to 1,700 meters) above sea level, cover the western slopes of the district. The monsoon rain and the cold dry weather produce a range of teas, from full-bodied to light and delicate. Enjoy with or without milk.
Uva teas are Exotically Aromatic Grown at an elevation between 3,500 to 5,500 feet (1,100 meters to 1,700 meters) above sea level, on the eastern slopes of Sri Lanka’s central mountains, the Uva teas have a truly unique flavour. These teas are commonly used in many different blends but, with their different characteristics, they can also be enjoyed on their own.
Kandy produces intense full bodied teas. An ancient capital of Ceylon, Kandy is also the first place where tea was grown in Sri Lanka. These mid country teas, grown on plantations at 2,000 to 4,000 feet (600 meters to 1,200 meters) produce a full bodied tea. Ideal for those who like their tea strong and bursting with flavour. Best served with milk.
Ruhunu teas are Distinctively Unique.These teas uniqueness begins with the low elevations of its plantations. The southern part of Sri Lanka, though now traditionally known for its tea growing does produce an exceptional tea. Grown from sea level to about 2,000 feet (600 meters) above sea level, the particular condition of the soil gives the leaves blackness and imparts in the brew a strong and distinctive taste. A perfect cup for those who like their tea thick and sweet, with or without milk.
Although far from comprehensive we list top quality teas from all of these areas:
We can particularly recommend the following:
- Nuwara Eliya - Lovers Leap Estate
- Dimbula - Pettagalla Estate
- Uva -Dyraaba Estate
- Kandy - Kenilworth Estate
- Ruhunu - Lumbini estate